I have recently been working with Vesta both the asteroid in astrology charts and the mythology. One of the most fascinating things about Vesta- and why I think she is an important archetype for this time- is that by probing her meaning and connecting with her energy she may help us to heal the false split (and shame) in women’s sexuality that was created by patriarchy, as well as aligning us with our true vocation.
In the original zodiacal belt outlined by the Assyrian and Babylonian cultures, Scorpio which was depicted by a serpent was directly followed by Virgo hence there was no Libra as such. Libra was contained within the constellation of Scorpio as the “Chelae” the claws of the scorpion. Only with the rise of patriarchal cultures was Libra- the sign of marriage- placed between Virgo and Scorpio. From then on women were either chaste before marriage or sexual consort after marriage. The recent discovery of Vesta which rules both Virgo and Scorpio can heal this artificial split thus restoring the sacredness of sexuality and allowing expressions of sexuality outside of marriage.
The glyph for Virgo and Scorpio are similar with the M of matter (Mother) turned inward for Virgo ♍ and outward for Scorpio ♏ These different depictions point to energy (particularly sexual energy) being either contained within (Virgo) as in the virgin archetype or directed outward and shared (Scorpio). The Vestal virgins in their original expression were sacred sexual priestesses who practiced the sacred rites by transmitting the fertilising and transformative powers of the Great Mother through their bodies. This facilitated healing, community harmony, and allowed for the possibility of human divine connection. The Vestals would periodically remove themselves from contact with others in order to rejuvenate themselves- become whole unto themselves- before placing themselves in sexual service again. Later, once patriarchy was established, divine lineage through the priestess line was usurped by the kings and it became an offence for the Vestals to practice their sacred rites. Instead their main duty was ensuring the burning of the sacred flame in Rome.
In the natal astrology chart Vesta can tell us much about how we use our sexual energy or libido and also points to our sacred vocation. For those with a strong Vesta signature, depending on house, sign and aspect, sexual energy may be expressed freely and even promiscuously, or else be repressed. Similarly in terms of our calling and vocation, we may be fiercely focused or else scattered and destabilised. Exploring Vesta in the natal chart can convey much of this meaning. Vesta shines a light into the essence of each of us, men, and women.
In todays full moon Vesta is at 20 Virgo.
The sabian Symbol for 21 Virgo is-
SECOND LEVEL: EMOTIONAL/CULTURAL
PHASE 171 (VIRGO 21°): A GIRL’S BASKETBALL TEAM.
KEYNOTE: Physical training as a means to inculcate the feeling of participation in a collective culture.
RECEPTIVITY TO COLLECTIVE FORCES
Putting aside competitive, individual goals we can tune into higher forces that focus on the bigger picture and collective aspirations
Basketball presents an interesting symbol. The ball must be thrown into a narrow opening high above the head of the player. The ego-consciousness (the ball) must be driven upward to a focal point or circle that is ready to receive it. Here the players operate as a team; what should be stressed here is the formation of a group acting as an organic whole and training itself to operate in a social context.
I love the idea of Team Vesta where each member is aligned with their unique essence and sacred vocation for the purpose of directing the ego consciousness toward a more liberated and connected human experience. To my mind this speaks of collective healing where those of us who feel called to participate in the forming of a spiritually embodied human experience and new Earth, come together as a team to support each other in our individual and collective visions.
If you would like an astrology consultation to explore Vesta in your chart, I am offering a 20% discount form now until the end of July. I am also offering an online workshop on Vesta in the astrology chart on Monday 5th July for those who are interested. Please PM me for details.
Information about the origins of the Vestal Virgins is found in Asteroid Goddesses: The Mythology, Psychology, and Astrology of the Re-emerging Feminine, by Demetra George and Douglas Bloch.